The Elephant in the Room is Cancer. Tea is the Relief Conversation Provides.

Survivorship

The stories and experiences are written by people after cancer treatments. These stories are written for those learning how to get back to work, college or just trying to be themselves again. Just getting past treatments isn’t enough, it is surviving and thriving that is key to being you again.

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The Unspoken Cancer

by Avi Grant-Noonan January 16, 2024

Cervical cancer is one of the cancers you don’t hear about. If you haven’t been impacted by cervical cancer, you don’t talk about it.

I want to share my story because I want to make sure every one understands there is no shame in being diagnosed with cervical cancer. In this age and time, it’s hard to find a space and people to talk to who can relate to what you’re about to go through, are going through, or have gone through—to ask questions or to just even have an ear to listen to you.

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How the Berating Surgeon Lost Her Power Over Me

by Erin Perkins January 11, 2024

Before the vaccine was available to the layperson, when the CDC was recommending double masking in public, in January of 2021, I attended my diagnostic breast biopsy alone. Double masked and still carrying the weight of my postpartum anxiety that caused a debilitating fear of germs, I entered the small, stuffy waiting room, forced to sit very close to my nervous comrades.

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Year Three: Mentally I’m… I Don’t Know

by Sheena Harris-Williams January 10, 2024

Who could ever forget 2020? Certainly not me. It will go down in history as a catastrophic year full of loss, grief, anguish, and unpredictability. If it wasn’t you yourself, you knew someone directly affected by the COVID-19 fallout: illness, job loss, struggling to stay afloat, etc. 2020 was an inescapable year. And I was no different…but for a different reason.

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Meeting Myself for the First Time

by Chelsey Gomez December 19, 2023

Boundaries—such a scary term and concept for someone like me who was raised without a solid understanding of healthy boundaries. I grew up being the perpetual “go-to” person in my family and in so many other areas of my life. I was always there for everyone else, regardless of my own needs. This was my way of life for 28 years, until cancer intervened, forcing me to reevaluate everything in my life.

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A Way With Words

by Marloe Esch RN, BSN, OCN December 18, 2023

You never know what you’ll find out about yourself when you put it down in writing; you can learn so much. You can say things you wouldn’t dream of saying out loud. You can be frank with yourself in ways that you can’t be with your partner, your mother, your best friend. You can tell the truth.

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The Language of Cancer: “Stay Strong” and Other Meaningless Platitudes

by Julia de'Caneva December 14, 2023

Navigating the language of cancer is one side effect of diagnosis that no doctor or checklist mentions. A cancer diagnosis becomes an exploration of identity, one that seems to evolve constantly. Survivor versus patient. Warrior versus, well, we’re still looking for an alternate care-forward word. That’s the crux of it.

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Loneliness Creeps In But Can’t Stay

by Tamron Little December 13, 2023

Have you ever felt as if you were surrounded by people but still felt like you were alone? I never would have thought that I would feel that way but I did when I was told I had cancer. Those who haven’t experienced a cancer diagnosis will never understand.

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Sex and Relationships

by Camille Ferruzzi December 7, 2023

How exactly do you tell someone, “Oh, by the way, my eggs got blasted from chemo therapy, and I will never be able to have my own kids”? And when exactly is the best time to bring this up? First date? Third date? Right before or in the middle of getting busy?

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Cancer and A Broken Heart

by Trevor Davis December 6, 2023

I spent most of my life before cancer on the outside. I was an observer rather than a participant. Much of that was the severe anxiety I was drowning in, but that’s not all of it. All of the things I enjoy most could be easily considered documenting. I’m a writer. I’m a photographer. I am even something of a musician.

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Cancer is Cancer

by Gordon McKavanagh December 4, 2023

Cancer is cancer. It doesn’t matter whether it’s below the belt or above the belt. The toxicity around word usage related to it is a problem. People get, and too often die, following silence and embarrassment from lack of validation either from themselves, others, or both.

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